Breakdown firm struggling to help drivers out of fuel as it also doesn’t have enough

Recovery companies are seeing a rise in drivers grinding to a halt with an empty tank amid Britain’s fuel crisis.
Some cars are coming to a halt agonisingly close from petrol stations

Recovery companies are seeing a rise in drivers grinding to a halt with an empty tank amid Britain’s fuel crisis.

Some have even been offered huge sums if they come with fuel.

Mohammad Aron from a car recovery service in Brentford, London, said fuel-related callouts had boomed and now made up around a third of its customers seeking breakdown assistance.

He told ‘Someone offered to pay £150 to come and bring him 10 litres of fuel.

‘But we said sorry, we can’t because our own drivers are struggling.’

A similar picture was painted by Cars Recovery London which said it was called to 25 cases of drivers running out of fuel over the weekend.

The company has been towing vehicles to a local forecourt and fielding numerous requests from people asking ‘Can you come and give us five litres of petrol?’.

Recovery workers in Manchester said they have witnessed cars break down within touching distance of a petrol station.

Motorists queue for fuel at an ESSO petrol station in Ashford, Kent. Picture date: Friday October 1, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story CONSUMER Shortages. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire
Motorists queue for fuel at an Esso petrol station in Ashford, Kent (Picture: PA)

They said some drivers were fixing the problem themselves by pushing their car to the petrol station or getting a friend to bring them some.

As the shortages continued for a third week, 200 troops were deployed to restock the most severely depleted pumps.

But even when levels return to normal, breakdown providers may find they’re still being asked to get cars with empty tanks on the road again as it’s a ‘common occurrence’.

The general manager of Hinton Rescue in Bristol, Ian Woolcott, said: ‘On the other side of the coin, we’re getting a lot of electric cars that run out of power.

? Licensed to London News Pictures. 04/10/2021. Hemel Hempstead, UK. Members of the military arrive at Buncefield oil depot in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire to drive oil tankers. Military personnel are expected to start helping with driver shortages today following more than a week of long queues and closures at petrol stations. Photo credit: Ben Cawthra/LNP
Servicemen arrived at Buncefield oil depot in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire on Monday to drive oil tankers (Picture: LNP)

‘It’s a human thing. They drive past petrol stations then run out of fuel, they drive past motorway services and don’t plug the car in to charge.’

The AA said: ‘Breakdowns related to the rush on fuel have returned to normal while mis-fuellings and out-of-fuels have more than halved. This all points to a considerable improvement in the fuel frenzy this week.’

A Green Flag spokesperson said: ‘We have seen an increase week on week of fuel related breakdowns. We’d encourage everyone to return to normal shopping behaviour as soon as they can so supply can again match demand.’

MORE : London petrol stations cash in on fuel crisis as price per litre soars to £3

MORE : Mum gives birth in back of pick-up truck at petrol station during fuel crisis

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at

For more stories like this, check our news page.

Bristol – Metro